Arrived at London Heathrow: a pretty efficient trip in from Cambridge this morning to catch the plane to Denver.
I was exhorting the class to learn from their own experiences and those of others, noting how long things take and their own style of working. Ideally, they should find how to make good task estimates and make better use of their time (I avoid ‘efficiency’, striving instead for a bit of humanity). While I still struggle with estimating job resources myself, I am at least getting pretty good at anticipating travel routes and times.
In the beginning, I was pretty much like the American reality show “The Amazing Race”, scrambling from waypoint to waypoint and figuring things out as I went. There wasn’t much time for seeing things or for meeting people, but, in the end, things always seemed to work out.
It just wasn’t pretty to watch.
Today I’m pretty much Rick Steves, an American travel writer who focuses on European travel. I know the ropes, how to do things, and where to find the good restaurants and shops. I know people all over and am comfortable on trains and busses (even, occasionally, on bicycles).
I have become pretty to watch. And I can reliably get from Cambridge to Heathrow on-time and at minimum cost.
I don’t want to become Ryan Bingham, George Clooney’s character in “Up in the Air”. There have been endless articles about his philosophical road-weariness, the empty lifestyle (an apartment decorated like a hotel room, with travel miniature portions in the ‘fridge and the bathroom), and the fact that his most meaningful relationships are the loyalty greetings that he gets from his airline and hotel partners.
Once again, it wouldn’t be pretty.